Southern Evangelical Seminary seeks to pioneer online learning
Posted on May 29, 2015
-Nationally Recognized Leader in Christian Apologetics Education Making Plans to Enhance Online Education Growth and Pave Way for Advanced Technology-
CHARLOTTE, N.C.—Southern Evangelical Seminary (SES, www.ses.edu) is in the midst of plans that will allow the leader in apologetics education to grow as higher education changes. SES has begun the process of exploring new campus locations in the Greater Charlotte area that will enable growth and promote advanced technology so students worldwide can be part of SES’s nationally recognized Christian apologetics education.
“Higher education is experiencing an Internet revolution that is roiling the entire educational world,” said SES President Dr. Richard Land. “Here at Southern Evangelical Seminary, online students once made up 40 percent of the student body. Today, that number is closer to 75 percent and SES has a 192 percent increase in student applications this year. With more and more students choosing this method of education that best fits with their career path, family life and lifestyle, SES is making changes with the future of higher education in mind. This adaptation is best for our students and will enable SES to continue to be the best stewards of the resources God has provided.
“These are exciting days for SES,” he continued. “God is indeed at work. More and more people want solid answers to honest questions. Churches are adding apologetics to their curriculum, and our graduates are going out into the world and making a difference.”
Land added that as SES seeks to fulfill its two founding goals of global evangelization and rigorous apologetics training for the body of Christ, the seminary’s leaders are prayerfully exploring the possibility of a sale of the present campus and the relocation to another campus in the Greater Charlotte area to expand the realm of online education and to be held accountable to the Lord for maximum stewardship for the furtherance of His Kingdom’s work.
Susan Jamison, Chairman of the SES Board of Trustees, stated, “I and the entire SES Board of Trustees are excited about the next stage in our school’s history. We believe the decision will further our purpose to provide quality programs for our students, both on campus and online, while glorifying God by our good stewardship.”
SES co-founder Dr. Norm Geisler added, “I commend the SES leadership for its strong commitment to the original SES vision and for its conservative and creative efforts to achieve this goal.”
Land stated, “People wonder why we would leave such a beautiful campus, especially when we own it free and clear, or as my East Texas grandmother used to say, ‘Lock, stock, and barrel.’ It is a stewardship issue, pure and simple. God in His gracious providence has provided SES with a beautiful campus and buildings in what is now one of the most rapidly appreciating real estate locations in all of North America. Consequently, SES is sitting on significantly appreciating assets for which the Lord holds us accountable for maximum stewardship for the furtherance of His Kingdom’s work.
“We want to be able to provide the highest quality, current internet education technology available and to be able to reach people of all walks of life, in all corners of the globe,” Land said. “SES is not the brick-and-mortar campus where we serve. SES is the human embodiment of the founders’ vision of a school that would train and equip godly men and women to fulfill the twin foundations of global evangelization and apologetics that obeyed the Apostle Peter’s command to ‘Sanctify Christ as Lord in your hearts, always being ready to make a defense to everyone who asks you to give an account for the hope that is in you, yet with gentleness and reverence’ (1 Peter 3:15, NASB).
“SES’s goal is to equip students and graduates to go forth both here in America and around the world and to win the argument for the truth of Christ and His Holy Word, but to do so as a means of reaching the ultimate goal of leading as many people as possible to a saving knowledge of Jesus as Savior and Lord,” Land continued. “By God’s grace, we look forward to continuing this critical mission with even more technological capabilities in the days, months and years ahead.”
Dr. Land also expressed his excitement in partnering with CNL Commercial Real Estate whose Religious and Educational practice group exclusively focuses on serving faith based and not-for-profit organizations with all of their real estate needs. Land commented, “This team operates from a place of gratitude and appreciation for what each of its customers and partners do for the community and how they unselfishly serve others. They have been offering real estate services to this community for more than 45 years and have worked in over 26 states.”
SES is a leader in apologetics education—teaching students to defend their faith and talk intelligently, passionately and rationally about what they believe and why they believe it. Many courses focus on societal issues from a Christian worldview, delve into scientific apologetics or contemplate creation research.
SES’s 22nd annual National Conference on Christian Apologetics will be hosted by Calvary Church in Charlotte on Oct. 16-17, 2015, with the theme, “Ideas Have Consequences: The Bigger the Idea, the Bigger the Consequence.” In addition to Dr. Land, confirmed speakers include Josh McDowell, Dr. Jay Richards, Dr. Hugh Ross, Dr. Norman Geisler and Dr. Paige Patterson.
Land is featured in his nationally syndicated daily radio commentary, “Bringing Every Thought Captive,” which airs on 200 stations on the American Family Radio Network and 100 stations on the Bott Radio Network. “Bringing Every Thought Captive” is also podcast daily on the free SES mobile app and airs locally in the Charlotte, N.C., area every weekday. The “Bringing Every Thought Captive” television program, hosted by Land, debuted in January on the NRB Network, and airs on Wednesdays at 8 p.m. and midnight EST. In May, it will begin airing on the Total Living Network, reaching nearly 2 million households in the Chicago area. For more information about stations, times, downloads and more, visit www.ses.edu/about-us/bringing-every-thought-captive.
Land has taught as a visiting or adjunct professor for several seminaries and has authored or edited more than 15 books. He earned his Doctor of Philosophy degree from Oxford University in England and his bachelor’s degree (magna cum laude) from Princeton University. Land also earned a Master of Theology degree from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary, where he received the Broadman Seminarian Award as the Outstanding Graduating Student. Dr. Land was the 2013 Watchman Award recipient from the Family Research Council for his leadership on moral and cultural issues. He also received the Phillip E. Johnson Award for Liberty and Truth from Biola University in 2010. Land served previously (1988-2013) as president of The Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, the Southern Baptist Convention’s official entity assigned to address social, moral and ethical concerns, with particular attention to their impact on American families. In 2014, he was appointed as a Senior Research Fellow of the ERLC’s Research Institute, and in 2015, he was named in the top 15 of Newsmax’s “Top 100 Christian Leaders in America.”
Southern Evangelical Seminary invites visitors to its web site to join the more than 20,000 people who have already downloaded the SES Apologetics App for Windows mobile devices and Android and Apple phones and tablets. Those with the app can get the very best news and information in Christian apologetics, including articles, audio, video, blogs and more from today’s most able defenders of the Christian faith—William Lane Craig, Lee Strobel, Josh McDowell, William Dembski, Frank Turek, Hugh Ross, Gary Habermas and other well-known speakers, authors and teachers.
Southern Evangelical Seminary has been ranked No. 1 for its General Christian Apologetics Graduate Program by TheBestSchools.org’s “Top 10 Graduate Programs in Christian Apologetics.” For more information, visit the SES web site at www.ses.edu or its Facebook page, follow the SES Twitter feed, @sesapologetics, or call (800) 77-TRUTH.
For information on SES or to set up an interview, contact Deborah Hamilton at 215-815-7716 or 610-584-1096, or Beth Harrison, 610-584-1096, Media@HamiltonStrategies.com.
Southern Evangelical Seminary is a leader in apologetics education—teaching students to defend their faith and talk intelligently, passionately and rationally about what they believe and why they believe it. The accredited Christian college and seminary in Matthews, N.C., offers a wide variety of bachelor’s, master’s and doctorate degrees. Programs can be completed through residence in the Charlotte area or online. The award-winning education at SES is distinctively Christian and focused on evangelism and world-engaging defense of the Christian faith—Christian Apologetics.